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P.E.I. to relax travel rules for the vaccinated

Wednesday, June 16, 2021 @ 4:20 PM | By Terry Davidson

Currently having no active cases of COVID-19, Prince Edward Island is accelerating its loosening of travel protocols for those vaccinated and entering from within Atlantic Canada.

According to a June 15 news release, the requirement that incoming travellers self-isolate will be lifted in certain circumstances as part of the province’s effort to speed up its “Moving Forward” plan.

Over the months of June and July, the island province will take a phased approach to loosen requirements for both visitors and returning Islanders.

Proof of vaccination will take the form of a pass that will be issued. People can apply starting June 17.

Also effective that day, P.E.I.’s self-isolation period will be reduced from 14 days to eight for those coming into the province from within Canada. That date was originally June 27 but has been moved up as part of the acceleration of P.E.I.’s opening plan.

Effective June 23, those who are vaccinated and entering the province from within Atlantic Canada under one of the travel streams — family connections, compassionate circumstances, exceptional travel and seasonal residents — will able to show their pass and, if approved, enter without having to self-isolate.

They will still, however, have to take a COVID-19 test after they arrive, according to the release.

And beginning June 27, partially or fully vaccinated pass holders coming in to P.E.I. from within Atlantic Canada and not falling under any of those streams will be exempt from having to self-isolate.

Unvaccinated Atlantic Canada visitors and Islanders will have to “complete a declaration and isolate for eight days with tests on entry and on day 8.”

And starting July 28, Canadians will be able to enter P.E.I. if they have been approved for a pass.

“Individuals who have received two doses of vaccine will be exempt from self-isolation, and those who have one dose or are unvaccinated can do so by following the 8 day self-isolation requirement. Canadians from outside the Atlantic Provinces can begin applying for a PEI pass on July 7.”

Two other Atlantic provinces, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador, will also reportedly be loosening their travel restrictions as of June 23.

Starting June 17, vaccinated residents of P.E.I. and the other Atlantic provinces can apply for the pass, which is a document verifying either full or partial vaccination.  

“The pass can be used multiple times and will expedite screening at PEI points of entry,” states the release. “To be eligible, you must have received your first dose at least 21 days ago, with the exception of those age 12 to 15 who are eligible any time after their first vaccine (until July 31). Each vaccinated person age 12 and over can apply for a PEI Pass to be exempt from isolation in PEI following travel within Atlantic Canada, parents must complete the application for children under 18.”

Premier Dennis King said in a statement that the advancement of his province’s reopening plan comes with levers making it possible to make adjustments when needed.  

“The decision to advance our Moving Forward reopening plan is a testament to the controls and measures we have put in place, the high level of adherence of public health measures by Islanders, and our COVID-19 immunization program heading in the right direction,” said King. “Our plan was created in a way to adjust steps as factors change, and with additional doses of vaccine arriving, we have the confidence to make changes. Decisions to get us to today have been consistent and always about finding the balance between keeping our province safe while taking cautious steps back to normal.”

P.E.I. had 206 positive cases since the start of the pandemic, states the release.

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